Translate The City

Translate the City is a project taking everyday cultural wisdom, stories and language idioms from the many different cultures in Auckland, and spreading them via translation and various activations to enhance connectedness and shared belonging in the city.
This project builds on the Auckland Plan’s acknowledgement of the importance of harnessing the resources of cultural diversity in the development of a world-class city, and takes that idea and demonstrates it in terms of a celebration of cultural diversity, enhanced intercultural understanding and desire to foster the invisible threads of connection between people.


The project, launched in September 2016, takes moments of everyday life and provides translations for them, at the same time as promoting a call to action for people themselves to contribute to translating the city. These translations take the moments of contact – between people, or between a person and the city – and in this brief pause, asks them to consider a different cultural context, an alternative translation or imagination for the moment. It’s these small interactions where we seek to enhance the spark of belonging, understanding and rapport between people and the city – “I see you, you see me”; whilst giving people a reason for becoming creative through their own cultural expression.

The project has received funding from Creative NZ for its initial research phase.

Project founding partners are:  Sugarlicks and Dione Joseph.
Delivery partners are: Splice, Pitch Studios